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As Nets, Irving situation becomes “acrimonious” other teams prep plans for Durant trade

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Kyrie Irving considers himself one of the elite players deserving a four- or five-year maximum contract. Brooklyn Nets management – after seeing how Irving played 103 of 226 games in three seasons and doesn’t seem to be fully committed to the franchise – doesn’t want to renew his tenure for more than a couple of years. Nets owner Joe Tsai backed the tough stance. (at least for now).

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What started as a public negotiation tactic between the parties has now become much more personal and intense, according to ESPN. Adrian Voinarovsky said in NBA TodayReal GM hat tip).

“It’s getting edgy,” Voinarovsky said of the talks. “I think it’s worrisome when you look not only at Kyrie Irving’s future in Brooklyn, but Kevin Duranfuture and whether they can hold it together right now.”

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When Irving gave the Nets a list of other places he would like to play, or at least made the list public, it was a sign that these negotiations crossed the Rubicon and there may be no way back.

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Other teams have taken notice and have quietly begun planning a trade for Kevin Durant, said ESPN’s Zach Lowe. Low Post Podcast.

“Teams are already working within limits, not assumptions, but we need to prepare for the contingency where Kevin Durant is available via trade in six or seven days.”

It seems that all the participants take stock of their relationship and decide if they want to continue it in the future.

One overlooked corner in it all Nets owner Tsai fires team CEO due to the growing financial losses of the franchise. While Tsai may be disappointed that ticket sales and sponsorship revenues are not as high as he expects or wants, the Nets will have estimated $98 million luxury tax this season in terms of player payroll, it is the second largest in the NBA (after Golden State). This is where losses mount—and for a team eliminated from the playoffs in the first round. These financial issues could lead Tsai to support management’s tougher stance on a player in Irving who they feel is not committed enough to win.

Durant has four years and $192 million as his contract is renewed next season, limiting his leverage to break into a specific team if he wants to leave.

And it’s still an “if” — while the general consensus is that Durant will ask if Irving leaves, that could depend on what the Nets get in return for the signing and trade and what other actions they take. Durant wants to win, he wants the ring, and if he feels the Nets owners aren’t willing to spend money on it, his eyes will wander. But he will be patient.

For a long time, it looked like the most likely outcome was that the Nets and Irving would stop their chicken game, find a middle ground, and make a deal. Not anymore. It’s gotten edgy and gone too far, and the big drama this offseason could be where the Nets stars end up playing next and how the Brooklyn franchise is progressing.

Important date: 29 June. That’s when Irving has to make a decision: get his $36.9 million for next season or become a free agent (which makes a trade to the Lakers or Knicks much easier).




Source: nba.nbcsports.com

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